Best Cool SEO Tools of 2011

SEO is a blend of art and science. The “art” side relies on knowledge, intuition and creativity. The “science” side can be made more effective and more efficient by using tools like the ones highlighted here—enabling SEO practitioners to focus more on the art part.

Need to analyze the optimization status of an existing website? Identify promising keywords? Analyze competitors’ backlinking strategies? Evaluate the impact of social media activities on search results? Create XML sitemaps for multiple search engines?

You’ll find tools to aid with all of those tasks and more in this collection of useful and cool SEO tools.

SEO Analysis and Reporting Tools

2 Free Tools to Find and Analyze SERP Dominators (for Competitor Research) by Search Engine Journal

Ann SmartyFrequent best-of honoree Ann Smarty reviews WhoICompete and Andrew Griffiths’ search marketing tool, two tools that, in her words, “let you generate the list of domains that get ranked high for several related search queries (we call them ‘SERP dominators’)”–in other words, the companies that are successfully utilizing web presence optimization (WPO) around these search phrases.

8 Cool Free SEO Website Tools by Abnormal Marketing

Fiona McEachranFiona McEachran looks at eight helpful free SEO toos, ranging from the widely used (e.g., HubSpot, Alexa, and Backlink Watch, which is one of my favorites) to the lesser-known but interesting like iWebTool—a suite of tools including a Backlink Checker, Google PageRank Prediction and Keyword Density Checker—and Best SEO Tools, another intriguing suite.

5 Free Web SEO Analysis Tools by Blogging News Technology

The English is a bit rough but the information useful in this post reviewing free web analysis tools, including WebSEOAnalytics, SEOWorkers and SEOrush.

What’s In Your SEO Toolbox? by SEO Book
***** 5 STARS

Eric CovinoWriting that “From a cost and time standpoint I’ve found it really helpful to pick a core set of tools and stick with them rather than bouncing around to get an extra feature or two,” Eric Covino reviews his favorites in this outstanding post. He helpfully divides his list of tools, most of which are market leaders, into five categories: keyword research, on-page criteria, rank checkers, competitive link research tools, and link monitoring tools.

Tools every SEO specialist and marketer should use by iMedia Connection

Jason HennesseyJason Hennessey offers mini-reviews of half-a-dozen useful SEO tools, including Majestic SEO, Raven Tools and SEMRush. This is a solid list for newbies, but experienced SEO professionals and digital marketers will likely already be using these (or their own favorite alternatives).

Challenges in Automated Traffic Reporting by The Daily SEO Blog

Benjamin EstesBenjamin Estes examines five tools for monitoring and reporting on organic traffic data, from the most basic (Google Analytics) through some more exotic options like Geckoboard and GinzaMetrics. He summarizes the capabilities, pros and cons of each tool, but doesn’t declare a “winner” as each client’s requirements are, after all, somewhat different.

The Good, Bad, and Ugly of Chrome SEO Extensions by Search Engine Journal

Benjamin BeckIn this concise and easy to digest post, Benjamin Beck serves up quick, bullet-point reviews of “good” SEO extensions for Chrome (among them: the SEO MOZ Bar, Buffer App and Check My Links) as well as “bad” and “ugly” extensions that either aren’t particularly useful or well-designed.

Single-Tool Reviews

Review: Bruce Clay’s Latest SEOToolSet by Coconut Headphones

Ted IvesTed Ives extols the virtues of Bruce Clay’s SEOToolSet, which includes tools for working through the SEO process in six main areas: keyword strategy, linking strategy, architecture best practices, content optimization, traffic analysis and monetization (determining click value). Ted’s conclusion: “Bruce’s product is very broad and comprehensive and covers more bases…(than) other tools…and is well worth trying out.”

A Complete Review of Wordtracker’s Link Builder by SEO Book

Eric Covino (again) provides a thoughtful comprehensive review, this time of Wordtracker’s Link Builder tool. He steps through the process of setting up a campaign, researching competitor link profiles, link analysis, finding contacts, reporting, and using the Firefox extension. Eric closes the post with a helpful summary of the features he likes as well as areas he feels could be improved upon.

Why Optify Got Down To SEO Basics by MediaPost SearchBlog

Laurie SullivanLaurie Sullivan reports on the Basic edition of Optify, a tool designed to help marketers and business owners not only “understand SEO, but also how social media influences search engine query results.” The tool offers some nice features, such as keyword suggestions and a one-click tracking plugin for WordPress, but it’s not clear if it covers all of the bases of WPO as well as an something like gShift Labs.

Google (and Yahoo!) Sitemap Generator for Windows – GSiteCrawler

This free Windows-based tool generates XML sitemaps for Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Keyword Research Tools

12 Popular Keyword Organization Tips & Tools by SEO Book

Aaron WallAaron Wall reviews “a dozen different tips and tools to help you organize your keywords,” including Ad Group Filter, SpyFu Keyword Groupie, Rank Checker, Xenu Link Sleuth and Screaming Frog.

6 Free Steps to Practical SEM Keyword Development by Target Marketing Magazine

Michel Leconte explains how to develop target keyword lists for SEO and SEM using common, popular tools like Google Analytics, Google AdWords, Google Webmaster Tools, Google Instant and Alexa, and concludes, “How do you know when you have not spent enough time doing keyword identification? Chances are that if you don’t need to develop any new content and/or re-organize your website to fuel and align with the strategy at the end of this process, you’re missing something.”

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  1. I see all of these web analytics / tracking tools, but why is no one mentioning a reliable program which provides reports to the customers? I have recently started working with a company called rank ranger that has given me good reports that I couldn’t find anywhere else- I recommend them.

  2. Hi Webbiquity,
    Thanks you for your post Every SEO professional agrees that doing SEO barehanded is a dead-end deal. SEO software makes that time consuming and painstaking job a lot faster and easier. There are a great number of SEO tools designed to serve every purpose of website optimization. They give you a helping hand at each stage of SEO starting with keyword research and finishing with the analysis of your SEO campaign results.
    Catch you again soon!

  3. Hi guys, some great and useful links here. The obvious tools I have heard of, but a couple of nice looking ones new ones certainly worth trying. Would be great to have you as part of our own blog community. See if there is anything you like 🙂 A slightly different slant, but if ya dont try ya dont know. Hope to see you over there. Cheers, Mark